They were built in ‘61 and ‘62, and captured in the “Bermuda” and “Princess Royal” ; and Major Wise thinks they are quite as likely to be as good as Blakely's present guns, which we are buying at such high rates.
If you doubt about buying a pig in a poke, very likely you may have time to send on and examine them.
I have no idea the War Ordnance Department will bestir themselves to build guns, and I think Massachusetts has got to take the risk of doing it. I hear Ericsson is building a gun at Bridgewater; and Wise says, that is the place for you to build on the steel rings.
I saw Mr. Stanton on my arrival, and found he has already complied with your wish to send the Fifty-fifth to Newbern.
The next day, Mr. Forbes
wrote to the Governor
, that Captain Wise
had forwarded to him a full description of the guns; also, the price, which the appraisers of them had fixed.
The price was very low, and Mr. Forbes
The six cheapest guns in the world.
They seemed to have been appraised on the same principle as you would appraise an elephant,— very cheap to any one who wants them; and the Navy naturally hate to have any thing making odd sizes of their shot.
Captain Wise says he has received no answer to a letter offering you any quantity of eleven-inch guns at cost.
I suggest answering him with thanks, and keeping the offer open until you can ascertain whether the cost of spindle of guns, the right weight, will be as much as that of the gulls.
then gives, at considerable length, an interesting account of the different kinds of heavy ordnance in America
and in England
, and of the experiments made for their improvement; one experiment alone having cost the English Government
seven millions pounds sterling.
He considered the Dahlgren and Rodman patents both good, and reliable for most purposes.
‘But in these times,’ he said, ‘without undervaluing them, I would prove all
things, and hold fast to that which is good.’
concludes his letter by saying,—
Nothing from Colonel Lowell's cavalry since yesterday morning, when they started for another reconnoissance.
A week ago, the crows looked wistfully at their horses, as if they had a right to them; and, when they return from this week's service, I fancy it will only be the hides and bones left to pick.
They are called better than the average!
I am glad to say, Major Crowninshield's battalion has been